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The One Ring Forums: Tolkien Topics: Middle-earth TV Series Discussion:
I'm wary of how Amazon will handle this

Victariongreyjoy
Lorien


Jul 12, 2:20pm

Post #1 of 19 (2473 views)
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I'm wary of how Amazon will handle this Can't Post

Could go either way. It can be the best show since GOT and on pair with it. But it could also be a abomination that makes The Hobbit looks like a masterpiece.

Honestly I wished WB would continue with making ME movies. The grand and epic scale of Tolkien's work belongs to the big screen imo.


Chen G.
Rohan

Jul 12, 5:28pm

Post #2 of 19 (2413 views)
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Depends on the story [In reply to] Can't Post


In Reply To
The grand and epic scale of Tolkien's work belongs to the big screen imo.


I would have begrudged the idea of a TV series from the outset if it had anything to do with the events of the First Age, which do indeed belong on the big-screen as far as I'm concerned.

However, I've always viewed the Second Age if not as "filler" than certainly as bridging material between the other two ages, which Tolkien was much more preoccupied with. So TV works for the Second Age, to me.


skyofcoffeebeans
Lorien

Jul 12, 8:13pm

Post #3 of 19 (2390 views)
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I disagree [In reply to] Can't Post

TV has the structural opportunity to bring more of the soul of [I]The Lord of the Rings[/I] to life without the distillation necessary to render it on a theater screen.

I say [I]The Lord of the Rings[/I] because I believe a remake is the natural, inevitable endgame of this project, no matter where they start.


Chen G.
Rohan

Jul 12, 9:03pm

Post #4 of 19 (2384 views)
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Disagree [In reply to] Can't Post

TV isn't qualitatively different to cinema: both are visual media at their core. So while there is the quantitive difference of TV accomodating a longer overall runtime, it still requires changes to be made to the source material, which is why TV adaptations aren't really that much more "faithful" than film adaptations. Look at the changes made to Game of Thrones, for a recent reference.

People dreaming about TV making for a better adaptations of The Lord of the Rings trilogy are doing just that - dreaming, or at least subscribing to wishful thinking.

The story of The Lord of the Rings is done with. As much as people like to point out Hollywood's propensity to remake its classics, it rarely remakes true classic, even when there's a source material just waiting to be re-interperated. There's a reason we haven't seen a remake of The Bridge Over the River Kwai, The Godfather or The Silence of the Lambs. The legacy of those films AS FILMS prohibits them from being remade, and the same - I wager - would prove true of The Lord of the Rings in the decades to come.


(This post was edited by Chen G. on Jul 12, 9:07pm)


Althoun
Lorien

Jul 12, 10:05pm

Post #5 of 19 (2370 views)
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Filler/bridging? [In reply to] Can't Post


In Reply To

In Reply To
However, I've always viewed the Second Age if not as "filler" than certainly as bridging material between the other two ages, which Tolkien was much more preoccupied with. So TV works for the Second Age, to me.


That would very much depend upon what 'arc' of the Second Age you're referring to, it being a 'composite' of two quite separate works: Of the Rings of Power (the forging of the rings) which is basically just essential backstory for the events of the Third Age War of the Ring and Akallabeth (Númenor-Atlantis).

The latter is certainly not 'filler' or 'bridging' but in conception was a wholly distinct pre-LotR work penned by Tolkien in the mid-1930s, originally forming part of a pre-publication of the Hobbit science-fiction time travel novel called The Lost Road (1936), in which a philologist has recurring dream encounters with 'Elendil' the Númenórean (survivor of the Anandune / Atlantis sinking) and eventually comes to realize that he is the 'reincarnation' (in some sense) of this ancient pre-Ice Age personage and can even 'remember' his life experiences in the dream-world. So he returns to Númenor in thought before the deluge, as Elendil speaking to his son Herendil (Isildur), when it is in the process of being corrupted by the evil divine being Sauron (appearing here for the first time!) under its tyrannical King Tar-Calion (Ar-Pharazon); where Tolkien describes in detail for the first time the satanic cult that has taken over the Isle under its high priest Sauron in his dark circular temple in Armenelos, the impending war with the Valar to wrest eternal life from the Undying Lands, the persecution flight of the Faithful etc.

Númenor, therefore, is not some filler-appendage between ages but a proper full-sized pre-LotR and indeed pre-Hobbit conception in itself that Tolkien continually returned to and progressively developed throughout the 1930s-1970s (in the Lost Road, The Notion Club Papers, The Drowning of the Anadune in the 1940s, The Akallabeth, Aldarion and Erendis near the end of his life etc.).

Indeed, it was when he couldn't get his time-travel Númenor-Atlantis novel published after the Hobbit in 1937, along with the Quenta Silmarillion, that Tolkien started (reluctantly) on LotR - another story about Hobbits which was what his publisher wanted (whereas he wanted to write about the Silmarils, the Noldor and the Númenóreans).

But Tolkien later found a way of 'synchronizing' Númenor into this new Hobbit-tale by species-bending Strider (originally a Hobbit named Trotter!) into none other than Aragorn, the Númenórean heir of the line of Elendil; with the 'bridging' Celebrimbor material ultimately being created to connect Númenor-Atlantis with the new forging of the rings plot.

That Númenor originally bore no relation to the 'rings of power' is evidenced by the fact that Tolkien never really worked out how the 'one ring' survived the Deluge when Sauron's body was destroyed but his spirit fled back to Middle-earth to reincarnate itself. In the original Drowning of the Anadune, Sauron hadn't had a Ring because there weren't yet any 'rings of power' at that time!


(This post was edited by Althoun on Jul 12, 10:10pm)


skyofcoffeebeans
Lorien

Jul 15, 6:47pm

Post #6 of 19 (2142 views)
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Eh [In reply to] Can't Post

Regardless of length or quality, the state of the industry now demands regurgitation. We will see a television adaptation / reboot of Tolkien's book onscreen in the next ten years, regardless of how good or long it ends up being. This isn't something I necessarily dream or wish for– it's just what will be demanded from the top down because that has been the most sound business decision for the industry in the last decade. You can thank Disney for that.

And I don't entirely agree with the examples you listed. Hannibal was two seasons away from remaking Silence of the Lambs before it was canceled. The Godfather could easily be pitched and picked up as a television show in today's landscape if someone wanted to make it badly enough. The Bridge Over the River Kwai doesn't lend itself to television, but it's fairly miraculous that a forgettable remake has never got off the ground as it has with so many other films of that time and genre.

Jackson's films aren't the end-all be-all adaptations of that particular book, and it's a mistake to think that this generation of filmmakers will set it in stone in the same way that the prior generation revered the filmmakers directly before them. Films were regarded as disposable for most of the twentieth century, and though icons like Scorsese have pioneered preservation and an understanding of film history, today's executives clearly regard IP as disposable for the sake of their own business interests. It's an inevitability that characters of the Third Age will return to the small screen in an expanded format. Could be a few seasons in, and it could be a failed spinoff– it's just a question of when.

I would also argue that TV is certainly qualitatively different to cinema– it's qualitatively worse, in the sense that TV budgets prove consistently unable to account for montage and consistently dynamic camera movements. Lots of walking and talking, maybe some fight scenes, but often fairly flat in its approach to visual storytelling.


Omnigeek
Lorien


Jul 25, 1:49am

Post #7 of 19 (1594 views)
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Correction [In reply to] Can't Post


In Reply To
Could go either way. It can be the best show since GOT and on pair with it. But it could also be a abomination that makes The Hobbit looks like a masterpiece.

Honestly I wished WB would continue with making ME movies. The grand and epic scale of Tolkien's work belongs to the big screen imo.


I wish the old New Line was around to push the creation of ME movies or TV shows. WB is the same corporation that gave us The Hobbit and Birds of Prey. They have no concept of honring the intellectual property they have inherited or purchased.


Chen G.
Rohan

Jul 25, 9:45am

Post #8 of 19 (1550 views)
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The Lord of the Rings are also WB movies [In reply to] Can't Post

And The Hobbit was a New Line movie, New-Line being owned by Warner Brothers.

If you think Robert Shaye or Mark Ordesky are to credit for the films' rather than the director and writers, you're wrong.


(This post was edited by Chen G. on Jul 25, 9:49am)


Paulo Gabriel
Lorien

Jul 27, 1:42pm

Post #9 of 19 (1400 views)
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Agreed. // [In reply to] Can't Post

 


Otaku-sempai
Immortal


Jul 27, 3:28pm

Post #10 of 19 (1396 views)
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Yes, but... [In reply to] Can't Post


In Reply To
The Lord of the Rings are also WB movies

And The Hobbit was a New Line movie, New-Line being owned by Warner Brothers.

If you think Robert Shaye or Mark Ordesky are to credit for the films' rather than the director and writers, you're wrong.


...New Line was being run very differently when the Lord of the Rings films were being made. Warner Bros. was much more hands-on during the production of the Hobbit movies. At least that is my perception of the situation.

#FidelityToTolkien


Chen G.
Rohan

Jul 27, 6:23pm

Post #11 of 19 (1384 views)
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It was different, alright [In reply to] Can't Post

New Line was more independent from Warners back in the early 2000s. The Hobbit had completely different executive producers.

But ON THE SET the production crew was the same down to the continuity supervisor.


Paulo Gabriel
Lorien

Aug 14, 9:03pm

Post #12 of 19 (899 views)
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Yes... [In reply to] Can't Post

The entire crew and most of the original cast (where applicable) returned, which goes to show how much of a miracle and absolutely outstanding these six films are.


Omnigeek
Lorien


Aug 30, 4:33pm

Post #13 of 19 (534 views)
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Not even comparable [In reply to] Can't Post

I said old New Line because the Appendices make it quite clear that NL let PJ have a pretty free hand and encouraged fidelity to the written works during LOTR. WB at the time was involved solely for distribution IIRC. NL wasn't simply an arm of WB 20 years ago like it is now. WB has a long history of corporate interference in the production and editing of films they actually control and it's become quite clear in recent years that a number of the executives at WB are delusional and driven more by ideological agenda than creative vision.


Chen G.
Rohan

Aug 30, 4:37pm

Post #14 of 19 (533 views)
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And yet [In reply to] Can't Post

There's absolutely no substantial evidence for editorial or indeed any creative interference in the films by WB. This isn't a David Ayer film, its a Peter Jackson film and I'm sure he had final cut.

If anything, in the New-Line days, with the fate of the studio resting on the films and Jackson being a relativelly unproven director, you'd see more room for the studio to interfere. Indeed, for The Lord of the Rings, Jackson shared final cut with Robert Shaye, although Shaye never used this.

One the pieces I like pointing to is that Jackson told Stephen Fry that the studio will see the rushes of him chomping into the mountain oysters before they'll be notified that the script was rewritten. Likewise, Jackson said Warner Brothers didn't want the title of the third film to change to "The Battle of the Five Armies", and yet Jackson did it. Those two examples (and there are more) are enough to show that there probably wasn't any real interference in the films.


(This post was edited by Chen G. on Aug 30, 4:40pm)


skyofcoffeebeans
Lorien

Aug 30, 10:32pm

Post #15 of 19 (506 views)
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Not really [In reply to] Can't Post

Evangeline Lily's history with the franchise alone is enough to support the narrative Warner was more hands on. I don't really think using Jackson's word as evidence is sound. Not only his job and career hinges on supporting the studio and the narrative they create, but that of his entire country's industry. This is something Ridley Scott knew all too well by the time he was wrapping Kingdom of Heaven, and I wouldn't be surprised if Jackson was putting it into practice too. Not sure that we'll ever know what was really going down in the 2-film to 3-film period. I believe Jackson when he said it was a creative decision from him, Fran, and Philippa, partly to wrap principal photography early and buy more time to plan. I don't believe there weren't mandatory studio notes.


Chen G.
Rohan

Aug 31, 10:19am

Post #16 of 19 (469 views)
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What "history?" [In reply to] Can't Post


In Reply To
Evangeline Lily's history with the franchise alone is enough to support the narrative Warner was more hands on.


She said when she signed on there wasn't a love triangle, and in block three there was. But remember that in a Peter Jackson film, the script constantly evolves, regardless of studio input. In fact, the interview in question was with Lily AS WELL AS JACKSON AND BOYENS, with the latter taking responsibility for the supposed "triangle" (which really only amounts to a a couple of looks from Legolas). At no point in the interview did Lily point, explicitly or implicitly, at the studio. It was just a rewrite.

I'm going to need much more substantial evidence before I assume the director is flat-out lying. There's no substantial evidence to back this up: it all borders on conspiracy theories.

It just doesn't play like the sort of movie a studio interfered in it. If the studio ran the show, the films would be much shorter (allowing for more daily showings), less violent, more linear, cheaper, and would exhibit much, much less of Jackson's penchant for gross-out moments.

Another detail to consider is that one of the executives on The Hobbit was Ken Kamins, aka Jackson's AGENT.


(This post was edited by Chen G. on Aug 31, 10:25am)


skyofcoffeebeans
Lorien

Sep 1, 5:06pm

Post #17 of 19 (401 views)
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Fair enough [In reply to] Can't Post

Except she has made it explicitly clear in multiple interviews that she signed on with the stipulation that there would be no love triangle, and had this to say:


Quote
"We came back for reshoots in 2012 … and they were like, 'Uh, the studio would really like to see…' And I was like, 'Here we go. Here we go' And sure enough I'm in another love triangle."


Film directors lie to the public all the time. It kinda comes with the job, especially with modern franchises. All communication with the public exists as PR and promotion for the film and the studio itself. It's not really rocket science.


Chen G.
Rohan

Sep 1, 5:17pm

Post #18 of 19 (398 views)
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I think she's misremembering [In reply to] Can't Post

For one thing, Evangeline Lily didn't do any reshoots in 2012. Her "reshoots" were done in July 2013.

She's talking about block three of principal photography, and she AS A PERFORMER in the film, has no way of knowing whether the addition of a "triangle" was mandated by the studio or made by Jackson and his writers at their own voilition. Namedropping the studio seems to be a conjecture on her part.

Actors aren't a good judge of that sort of thing. You'd need someone closer to the core creative circle of the writing and producing process, not someone who is there to speak the lines.

I think accusing someone of lying is quite a major thing, and I wouldn't do that to Jackson until I see much more definitive proof. There's plenty of stuff that Jackson said that a producer more beholden of studio-interests would have remained mum about: cf. his "winging it" comments. Remember, this is the man who basically told Warner's CEO to bugger-off twice when offered to direct Aquaman.


(This post was edited by Chen G. on Sep 1, 5:22pm)


skyofcoffeebeans
Lorien

Sep 2, 1:43pm

Post #19 of 19 (328 views)
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I'm personally more likely to take Evangeline at her word [In reply to] Can't Post

It's always seemed to me that the mandate of a love triangle was something no creative on the project was interested in, hence, it's barely there, and there have been many serious arguments on this board that it doesn't even exist.


(This post was edited by skyofcoffeebeans on Sep 2, 1:44pm)

 
 

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